Shooting woes plague Rams in latest loss
As obvious as Shepherd’s hustle, caring about its problems and camaraderie were the Rams shooting woes were easier to see.
In its 84-65 loss on Monday to Notre Dame (Ohio), there were three changed starters from the previous loss to Urbana. But there were three fouls whistled against the Rams in the first 1:03 of play . . . and Shepherd misfired on its first seven field goal attempts as Notre Dame flashed out to an 8-0 lead.
When Liz Myers reported to on-court duty, she scored six of Shepherd’s first nine points, yet the Rams were doubled on the scoreboard, trailing 22-11 after one quarter.
Badly missed shots — known as air balls — dulled Shepherd’s chances of catching up to the sweet-shooting Falcons. In all, the Rams had between eight and 10 air balls, failing to hit the rim on a wide variety of shots from three-to-20-feet out.
Notre Dame quickly expanded its advantage, taking a 42-23 lead at halftime. Shepherd’s field goal percentage in the half was only 27 percent. Myers had 13 of Shepherd’s 23 points, making 6-of-8 shots from the floor. Morgan Arden, the Rams leading scorer, had not counted a single point.
While Arden would reverse her scoreless first-half showing throughout the last two quarters (scoring 19 points), it was much too late to hamper Notre Dame’s victory march.
The Falcons scored the first six points of the third quarter, spurting to a 48-23 lead.
There was never any wavering of the Shepherd spirit or its team-wide effort to improve its lot, but a severe lack of rebounding, more common-place shooting and a total of 19 turnovers bleached any sweat and toil the team gave.
Notre Dame’s lead went out to over 30 points before its long line of reserves weren’t able to keep Shepherd from whittling away at its deficit that finally dipped to 19 points.
Shepherd was 4-12 overall and 3-7 in its Mountain East Conference. The Falcons improved to 10-6 overall and 7-3 in the same conference.
Despite its caring ethic and attention to duty, poor shooting had ruined the Shepherd chances of finding improvement at the close of another work day.